The Hunt That Follows, story by Penelope Draft at
Zhifei Zhou

The Hunt That Follows

The Hunt That Follows 

written by: Penelope Draft


It’s been 5 years since the last nightclub massacre, and the citizens of Seattle still travel outside of the city for a club destination. The young nightlife turned to horror one night in October. It was just a normal Halloween Karaoke night at the Purple Mist Lounge when 2 men in animal masks raided the club and killed 27 party members. To this day the police still have no leads. The Purple Mist Lounge eventually went out of business after being closed for so long. Maggie, Molly’s sister, still had nightmares of that night, until the guilt from surviving finally caught up to her, and she killed herself. Molly vowed to never go to parties or nightclubs after seeing what it did to her sister. That is of course until she met Davis Romanov, no connection to the royal family. Davis swept Molly off of her feet, literally. They met at a roller rink in Seattle during mingle night, they got to chatting and went skating together. I guess you can say they just rolled with it.
“Hey Davis, what do you wanna do tonight, I’m kinda feeling like we stay in, order take out, get really drunk, and dance in our pj’s,” she danced with her hands raising the roof.
“Molls, why don’t we ever go out,” Davis exasperated with rolling eyes. “Come on babe, we’re in our twenties. Can we please just have some fun for once? It’s been 5 years, and we’ve been together for 3. We can have some fun; it won’t kill you.” he scoffed.
Molly froze, “why would you say that?” She looked at Davis confused and angry. “Nevermind, I’m just going to go to bed.”
“Molls, I didn’t mean it! Molly it’s 6’o-,” she slammed the door, cutting him off.
A couple of hours pass by and Molly comes out of their room. Davis can tell she has been crying. She walks toward the kitchen, and the time reads 9:46 pm. God, I have to go do something, she thinks. The oven feels unreasonably warm and she sees that cookies have been baking. Oatmeal cookies, her favorite. Davis gets up from the couch and wraps his arms around her waist.
“I’m sorry, I shouldn’t have said that. That was way out of line, my love,” he kisses her on her head.
“It’s alright, thank you for the cookies,” she grabs the wine from the cabinet, “We can still have a fun night.” She takes the remote from the living room and begins to play music on the TV in the living room.
The couple dances the night away, and passes out on the couch, only to be greeted by the harsh afternoon sun brushing the blinds. Good God, Maggie thinks, I should probably clean this up. She begins to clean up their living room, there are clothes all over the place, pillows on the floor, and the TV has already gone to its automatic screen saver. While cleaning, she takes account of what the couple needs.
“Why do we literally have no milk, or creamer? Oh my lord, where are my K-cup pods?” she mumbles to herself while looking about the kitchen. Davis is lying on the couch with only the throw pillow to cover him, Maggie takes the pillow and throws it onto him.
“WAKE UP!” she exclaims, “This place is a mess, can you go get dressed and help me!”
Still, with some slobber on the corner of his mouth, Davis mumbles, “Yeah yeah, clean yep”
“Thank you,” Maggie says, voice rising in song, “I’m gonna head out to the store, do you want anything?”
Davis shakes his head no, so Maggie grabs her keys and heads out to their Walmart. As Maggie is sifting through the berries and the oranges in the produce aisle, she spots a man. He is tall, with olive skin, with very shiny, but not oily hair. It seems that he also spots Maggie and makes his way up to her.
“So do you like raspberries or blueberries?” He asks her.
“Blueberries, what about yourself?” she replies.
“I’m more of a blueberry guy myself, they’re kind of tangy. Hi, I’m Theodore, but everyone calls me Theo.” he reaches out his hand for her.
“Hello, Theodore. I’m Molly,” she says with a smile on the side of her face, “I like your jacket, where did you get it?”
“Oh this scrubby thing?” he flares his jacket, “I thrifted it.”
Molly bites her lip and feels the jacket, “wow it’s in good shape, I can’t believe someone would throw it away,” Molly’s phone begins to buzz, Davis<3 appears on the screen, “shit, I totally forgot that I have to prep dinner tonight.”
“Dang, is that your-” she cuts him off.
“Boyfriend yes, ha-ha” she chuckles and sighs awkwardly, “I gotta go checkout so I can cook for tonight.”
“Oh yes, don’t let me keep you waiting, I know you have a boyfriend, and don’t think I am trying to overstep, but can I have your number?” Theo asked calmly.
“Um yeah sure.” Molly handed him her phone and he entered his number swiftly, “I’ll see you around,” she asks while departing.
“Yep, see you around Molly,” he lowers his voice as she walks away.

Molly returns home a few moments later and sets the groceries on the counter. 3:27 pm the stove clock reads.
“I hope you didn’t need anything else,” she sighs, “this is all I picked up and I do not feel like going back any time soon.”
“Nope, I did not need anything. Why did you not answer my call? It went straight to voicemail, I was worried.” Davis said while helping Molly put the groceries where they belong.
“I’m sorry I just got caught up with a friend. I meant to text you. It won’t happen again.”
Molly’s phone buzzes and the name Theodore comes up on the screen.
“Who’s Theodore?” he asks defensively, his eyebrows raised.
“It’s just a new friend I made at the store, nothing to worry about.” She gives Davis a kiss on the cheek, calming him, and begins to cook dinner.
Weeks passed after Molly and Theo’s interaction and a simple store fling turned into more. When Davis would be gone for his work trips, Theo would take his place. One night, Davis had questioned Molly about a pair of boxers in their laundry that was not his. Molly then confronted Theo.
“Theodore, you can’t just keep leaving your shorts at my house, my boyfriend is starting to suspect things.” She begins to grow frustrated.
“I’m sorry Molls-” Theo says apologetically.
“Do not call me Molls, that is for friends only and you are just a fling.” Anger filled her dark brown eyes.
“I’m sorry Molly. I just don’t want to keep this a secret anymore; I feel like he should know. Molly, I’m itching,” he began to frantically itch his arm.
“Cut the dramatics. You think he should know what? This is nothing but a weekend fling, don’t get too attached now.” She began to talk faster, her words bumping into each other, she snaps, “Matter of fact, get out, I’ll see you later. GO, GET!” Molly starts to throw his clothes and shoes at him.
Davis is beginning to suspect that something more is going on when Molly is by herself at the house all weekend. He decides to come home on Saturday instead of Sunday. Davis unlocks the door of the house and Molly rushes Theodore to the closet of their bedroom.
“Shit! He’s home early, get in the closet!” Molly begins to wrap herself up in the sheets and walks out to the kitchen. “Hey baby,” she kisses Davis on the cheek.
“Hey,” he raises his eyebrow, “why are you wrapped in our sheets?”
“Oh this,” she grabs the bottom, “it’s for you. You came home earlier than I thought.”
“Ohhh, what exactly is for me?” he chuckles and picks her up onto the counter.
In the closet, Theo is frantically trying to get dressed. Theo, being too tall to fit comfortably in the closet ends up knocking a glass picture of the couple, pulling Davis away from Molly. He goes to search around for whatever caused the noise. Before Davis makes his way out of the bedroom, Theodore is able to pry the window open and shimmy out.
“I knew you were cheating Molly! What the hell babe?!” Davis looks at her with disappointment.
“I do not know what the hell you are talking about! There is nobody or nothing here!” she begins to help him look out of spite.
Davis continues to look around the room for anything that may be suspicious.
“Whose underwear is this huh?” Davis picks up the boxers Theo had been wearing that night. “What will it take Molls? Huh? Am I not enough for you, are WE not enough?!”
Davis began to rage around this house slamming doors and looking for Theo, when he found nothing he had become enraged. He stormed off to his shed in the backyard, slamming the door on the way out and breaking the glass. Molly sat there, naked on her bed wrapped in the sheets, her hands in her lap.
“I really messed up this time,” she begins to talk to her sister through tears, “Maggie I- I just wish you were here, I don’t know what I’m doing. Davis is a great guy, he’s caring, tall, and handsome. You’d love him if you knew him, Mags, I messed this all up.” Molly cries throughout the night.
Through her tears, Molly picks up her phone and texted Theo. It reads, It’s over, he found out, I can’t do this anymore. I’m sorry. Davis comes back into the home later that night and finds Molly asleep in the bed. He joins her for the night, kissing her head and stroking her hair.
“Better be careful,” he whispers.
That morning Molly decides to go out for a backyard stroll. The way wet grass from the morning dew caresses in between her toes. The smell of the cool morning air. It all piqued her curiosity. She remembers that Davis had spent a long time in the shed last night, so she walks over to go and check it out.
Molly jiggles the door handle, “Shit, it’s locked.” she shakes the door out of anger, eager to know what’s in there.
“Molly!” Davis yells from the kitchen window.
“Ugh,” She sighs, “I’m coming!” she yells back as she rolls her eyes.
She walks to the kitchen; Davis is making food. Sunny Side up eggs, bacon, and sausage. The traditional as she calls it.
“Aw babe, what’s this?” she asks in a suspicious voice, coming from outside, scratching her curly brown hair.
“It’s my apology, I’m sorry about last night, I-” he smacks his lips, “I just don’t know what has gotten into me, Molls. I think we should talk.”
“Oh, okay… What do you want to talk about? You have to go to work soon, can’t it wait?”
“I mean I guess I can wait. I just,” he pauses, “I just feel like we’re not really… I don’t know.”
“No yeah it’s ok, I understand.” She looks at him with pity in her eyes.
“So,” she drags out, “What’s in that shed?”
Davis tenses up, becoming defensive, “We don’t need to talk about the shed.”
“Oh ok,” she shrugs, “I guess I’ll just see you after you get off?” her face begins to sadden.
“Yep,” Davis smacks his lips, “I’ll see you then, I love you.”
“Love you too” she replies, closing the door behind him.
Davis heads to work and Molly goes upstairs to get started on her job. Molly does a lot of freelance work, making templates and scheduling for the office she works at. Around 12pm, she decided to go and search. She sees the shed from her bedroom window and decides to look for the key. She looks all around her room for this key, under the bed, behind the desk. She thinks to herself, where the hell would he put this key? She looks over to the broken picture of them from the night before, aha! She notices the key in the corner of the frame. She heads outside to try it. At first, it wouldn’t work. Shit, she thinks to herself. She walks up the stairs of their deck and stabs her toe on a wooden splinter. She falls in pain.
“Ouch dammit! We need to repaint these steps.” She grunts in anger, taking the splinter out and going back upstairs.
When Davis had come back from work he went straight to the shed. He grabs his phone and texts a random number, it’s time. He exited the shed forgetting to lock it behind him. That night as Molly lay in her bed, staring out the window, her mind wondering… She waited until Davis went to sleep to go back outside. She tip-toes through the house quietly, making sure not to make a single floorboard creak. Molly goes out to the shed this time making sure to not step where she got the splinter. Upon entering the shed, she turns on the light, click. She shrieks, waking up Davis. Davis looks out the window, watching Molly see what’s in the shed. A spike ball, a chain, and two animal masks. The same items from the Purple Mist Lounge Massacre.
“OH MY GOD,” she repeats to herself through tears.
She hears the hard footsteps of Davis running down the steps. Before he can make it outside, she sprints to her car, slipping on the wet grass. She starts her car frantically and speeds back out of the driveway, hitting the mailbox on the way out. Molly, having the head start, ditches her phone on the road, running over it. She heads straight for the highway and Davis follows behind her, calling his accomplice.
He calls, Ring, ring, ring.
“Hello?” the person on the other side answers.
“Yo, you’ve gotta get up now. The bitch found out, we gotta get to her now! I’m coming to get you. Be fucking ready.” He hangs up the phone and slams it onto the seat out of excitement.
Molly’s car is filled with silence but the thoughts in her head are all the noise she needs. Why couldn’t I see this? How could I be so stupid? Why me? Oh my god did he-? He did!
She screams in agony, “Oh my god Maggie! He killed you! He is the-” She begins to break down, parking her car on the shoulder of the interstate.
“Why would he, why? Who helped him.” she sobs violently.
Molly knows she cannot stay in the car for too long, so she ditches her car and runs off into the woods. The boys eventually catch up to her via a tracker Davis had put in her car, then they begin to hunt for her on foot. While running through the woods, Molly hears the boys talking, they sound far, but not far enough so she begins to run. The men hear this and start to run after her. Molly doesn’t get too far, she steps on a huge tree branch and it pierces through her foot.
“OUCH, OH MY-“ she screams in anguish and covers her mouth quickly. She thinks to herself, this is the end.
The pair hears Molly’s scream and begins to follow it.
“Molly, Molly.” Davis taunts.
“Molly! Where are you?” his accomplice says.
“T-Theo?” She mumbles.
“Yes! I saw your car on the road, and I didn’t see you, are you ok?” he asks.
“No, m-my foot.” She begins to cry again.
“What about your foot?” he calls out.
“We’re close, keep her talking,” Davis whispers under his breath.
“I stepped on this tree branch, there’s a gaping hole in my foot, Theo please help me. I don’t know what got into Davis, I think he’s going to hurt me.”
“I’m coming Molly, don’t worry,” he reassures her.
“You have to hurry! He killed my sister! Please I have to get out of here please Theo.” she pleads.
Theo approaches Molly in the woods. “Ha-ha” Theo chuckles, “you know, you’re kind of stupid.”
“W-what?” she looks confused.
“It finally took you long enough to figure it out, huh? See Davis didn’t only kill your sister. Davis and I planned and executed the entire massacre at the Purple Mist Lounge. Davis and I stalked your sister until she killed herself. It’s a guilty pleasure of ours. Popping up in her life every now and then just to remind her. Davis and I did all of that. And you?” he chuckles, “You wouldn’t be in this situation if you would’ve just stayed out of the shed, you stupid little bitch!” he slaps Molly across the face.
Davis shows up behind Theodore and Molly begins to plead.
“Please, please I won’t tell anyone, please help me. No, no no!” she repeats, “What are you doing?!”
The two men drag Molly to their shed in the woods kicking and screaming for her life. The men have very little care for her. Molly attempts to make a run for it but only makes it a few feet before stumbling to the ground. Molly lay there on her stomach praying.
“Lord, please forgive me for all of my sins. Please help me in this time of need, or let it be known that I fought,” she mumbles under her breath.
“Oh shut up!” exclaims Davis in disgust.
Davis flips Molly onto her back and pulls out a knife from his pocket. Molly notices that it’s from the knife set she had bought Davis for his birthday. Davis starts to slice Molly from the top of her chest to her stomach, exposing her organs. Molly kicks Davis back, knocking him over, but the blood loss from her wounds causes her to pass out. Theodore leaves the shed for a while while Davis finishes up. He takes Molly by her feet, tying them tight with string, Molly regains conscience moments later to find that she has been bound by her feet. Finding that she is having trouble breathing and looking down and her open stomach, she screams. Blood fills her throat and she begins to choke, gurgling until it just stops. Theodore comes back into the shed from the woods to finish off their prized work. Theodore sets down his bag on the floor and takes the rope around Molly’s feet, hanging it around the pole on the top of the shed. He begins to draw his signature cut into her thighs. He picks up the bag from the floor and stuffs berries down her throat.
“See, I remembered. You like blueberries,” he says with a giggle at her swinging pale, porcelain corpse.

Many years later the woods off I-90 are being cleared out. Bulldozers began knocking down trees when they reached the shed. The construction worker gets off the bulldozer and opens the shed door, he passes out from the smell and the sight of four dead bodies, gutted. Dried blood on the ground flies buzzing around. His buddies ran over to see the same sight, so they called the police.
“Alright what are we dealing with today,” he says, “holy shit,” the officer’s jaw drops at the sight.
“Do we think this is her?” His partner asks.
“I’m not sure, we have to take dental samples, only lord knows what happened here.” He replies. The two officers report it and begin to investigate.

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